A splendid book… the group’s exponential growth was driven almost entirely by an unlikely pair of public relations experts who turned out to be consummate swindlers
"For the Kingdom and the Power is a splendid book on the so-called “second era” Klan, the largest in the 150-year history of the organization. In a detailed account rich with fascinating characters, Dale Laackman shows how the group’s exponential growth was driven almost entirely by an unlikely pair of public relations experts who turned out to be consummate swindlers."
—Mark Potok, Senior Fellow, Southern Poverty Law Center
Pulls back the curtain on the secret PR operation that built the Invisible Empire
"Behind the cross burnings and hooded rallies the Ku Klux Klan was fueled by shady marketers who sold hate across America. For the Kingdom and the Power pulls back the curtain on the secret PR operation that built the Invisible Empire."
—Bob Orr, CBS News Justice Correspondent and 6-time Emmy winner
A dark chapter of American business history
"Dale W. Laackman delves into a dark chapter of American business history, where PR entrepreneurs and Klansmen forge an alliance with long reaching effects. Filled with unexpected twists and characters you only wish were fictional, coupled with expert research, Laackman skillfully tells an original and riveting tale."
—Arnie Bernstein, author of Swastika Nation:
Fritz Kuhn and the Rise and Fall of the German-American Bund
"Anyone interested in the inner workings of the Klan, the impacts of greed and fraud on an organization, the power of public persuasion that is tapped by expert public relations and the best of early newspapering will find it in For the Kingdom and the Power." Read the whole review.
—Ann Frantz, Read It and Reap
An absolute must-read for anyone intrigued by 20th-Century political history…I couldn’t stop reading. There is much in [here] that resonates with today’s ever-shifting, often manipulated political landscapes.
"Dale Laackman’s For the Kingdom and the Power is an absolute must-read for anyone intrigued by 19th- and 20th-century political history, and the ins and outs of how public relations strategies can swell organizational ranks, even as they are being shaped by self-serving crooks. As the book travels through the stories of the first- and second-era Ku Klux Klans, Laackman presents an engrossing account of how and why the 1920s Klan membership swelled into the millions. The major historical figures are wonderfully detailed and presented; I couldn’t stop reading. There is much in For the Kingdom and the Power that resonates with today’s ever-shifting, often manipulated political landscapes."
–Frank E. Beaver, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor Emeritus, Screen Arts and Cultures, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Don't Know Much About History...?
"Not just interesting, but fascinating story of the public relations team that promoted the Ku Klux Klan in the late 1910s and early 1920s. To think that all this happened pre-WWII and how we as a nation fought the Nazis is ludicrous. Dale Laackman sets up the reader with lots of background information and slowly pulls you in so that you can't wait to hear what happens next. And this is history, not a fictitious story. Klan membership went from 500 to 5,000,000 under their reign and they made a lot of money doing it. Governors, mayors, judges, and police all helped promote their cause across the country, that white supremacy rules, we need to protect 'real' Americans, and step up and take action whenever we see injustices. This was vigilante justice at its best and people signed on in droves. They had costumes, rituals, and dues, just like all the other fun fraternal organizations and Edward Young Clark and Bessie Tyler easily took William Joseph Simmon's ideas and exploited them all out. Recommended for fans of history and anyone looking for a good solidly researched read."
—Teri Hennesy, Amazon, 5 stars
How the KKK grew from nothing to larger-than-life on the strength of a good PR scheme
"If your understanding of the Ku Klux Klan is a bunch of good old Southern boys getting together on weekends to raise a little hell, For The Kingdom and the Power will shed a whole new light on how an organization that was on the brink of extinction was brought back to life by a couple of shrewd PR wizards. Along the way, they made themselves rich while growing the membership numbers across the U.S. and raising the Klan to almost rock-star status. Dale Laackman’s look at the inner workings of the Klan, its founder, and those who saw profit in spreading hate and bigotry will leave you wondering how so many could be taken in by such an audacious scheme. Intrigue, skullduggery, and financial shenanigans all play their part in this exposé of one of the most secret groups in 20th century America. An easy read, you will have a hard time putting it down until you finish the epilogue, which draws comparisons in the operations of the Klan, Charles Ponzi and Bernie Madoff."
—John P., Amazon, 5 stars
Well-researched and extremely interesting
"I this book is wonderfully written, very well researched, and extremely interesting as well. It is much more than just a history of the rise of the KKK. It also encompasses post Civil War America, the rise of movies, yellow journalism of the 1920s, a little sports, and an interesting study of the uses of publicity and propaganda. I enjoyed it very much."
—Pat, Amazon, 5 stars
Wonderful look into the rise and fall and history of one of the most powerful secret societies in our nation
"Wonderful look into the rise and fall and history of one of the most powerful secret societies in our nation. Dale has done his research and masterfully put it all into book form. I highly recommend this book!"
—Dianna Gugliuzza, Amazon, 5 stars